by Frank Williford
“I cannot guarantee your social security check will go out on the 3rd.”
He probably can’t guarantee the world will not end before the 3rd either.
He obviously knows a statement about the world ending by the 3rd would just be viewed as a silly statement by him. He expects an uninformed public will view a possible delay in social security payments as a world-ending event.
Does Obama understand the difference between being illiquid and being insolvent, or is he trying once again to frighten people into insisting that he gets what he wants. The country is not insolvent. The Treasury has a brief illiquidity problem if it does nothing. Their illiquidity problem would likely last only a few days at the most. It will not exist at all if Treasury takes appropriate action.
The Treasury should not be allowed to do nothing to avoid temporary illiquidity. For example, instead of mailing out social security funds a few days late the Treasury could elect to pay into the federal employee pension trust fund only a few days late. Obviously none of the politicians want to do this. Such action could later be viewed as precedent setting. Their trust fund is secure. It has not been robbed in the same way Government has robbed social security. Possibly the Lock Box Al Gore talked about so often only applied to Government pensions while we thought he meant social security.
What about the nearly 200 billion dollars in TARP assets the Government is still sitting on. AIG, GM and many other items are readily marketable but the Treasury will have to plan a few days in advance to get their sale done.
Then there is the Federal Reserve’s ability to print money whenever it wishes to so do. It does not have to purchase treasury securities with the money as has been done in the past. It can merely loan the money to Treasury without asking for any security. A “gift” if you will. Hopefully, but not necessarily a temporary gift. A gift would not be counted against the debt ceiling. Such an action could not be prevented if the Administration so chose.
Let’s hope the true facts are known to all of our representatives Republican and Democrat alike. If once again the Government is allowed to successfully engage in duplicity our country will pay a terrible price. The debt ceiling will ultimately be raised but if it is done so without some firm non-revocable spending cuts of true significance then none of our elected representatives and far too many of the Administration’s non-elected appointees will not have upheld their oath of office and they should all be summarily discharged.
I wish I could feel more optimism about the present debt limit talks. If the past is any indicator a convoluted, non-enforceable, possibly even incomprehensible compromise will be reached so that both Republicans and Democrats can claim victory. If this happens our country will have lost a true opportunity to change the way Washington works and we will all ultimately be worse off for it.
AS Herb Cain is so fond of saying; We are trying to solve the wrong problem. Why should we the people (the government) be obligated to pay for anyone’s health care, prescriptions or hospital care, or retirement?
We have been fed BS for almost my whole life;FDR’s idea to provide support for the elderly
(those over 60 then) whom he had unemployed; and LBJ’s Idea to provide health care & even Bush’s prescription care, were all bad ideas. Before the government got involved in Medical care it was affordable.
This Nation was built on the backs of self-reliant men & women. Social Security worked for a while , only because of men like my father who paid in for fifteen years and then died before he ever recovered a cent. It was , is and will always be a Ponzi scheme. Bernie Madoff is in jail for a much small scheme.Same principal, same out come, except FDR & LBJ didn’t go to jail.
The only solution is to liquidate the SS “Lock Box” by paying of the entitlements with some of the vast unused land still in the Government’s ownership, might even toss in a few shares of GM for the gullible.Then the people must be responsible for their own health care, and retirement.
That will be possible when Taxes are reduced ; the economy recovers; demand adjusts the prices; and the taxes are paid by all the people and those waiting for a handout go to work. It is surprising how creative you get when you are hungry enough.
All the problems that exists today are the result of BAD LEGISLATION, in the form of welfare, entitlements, grants & giveaways,
The United States has run out of other people’s money. Stop honoring those who find unneeded programs to spend borrowed money on.